Birds of the World

COAST BIRDS
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WORLD BIRDS
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ANECDOTES

  Tts
 
 
 

TRAITS
 Ratites
 Tinamous
 Cracids/Galli
 Waterfowl
   Screamers
   Ducks

 Penguins
 Loons
 Grebes
 Procellarids
   Albatrosses
   Petrels
   Storm-Petrels

Totipalmate Swm

   Tropicbirds
   Gannets/Boobies
   Pelicans
   Cormorants
   Anhingas
   Frigatebirds

 
Waders
   Herons
   Ibises
   Storks  

 NW Vultures
 Flamingos
 Raptors
 Gruiformes
   Buttonquail
   Bustards
   Cranes
   Rails

 Shorebirds
   Sandgrouse
   Plovers
   Oystercatchers
   Stilts
   Sandpipers
   Gulls/Terns
   Auks

 Pigeons
 Parrots
 Turacos
 Cuckoos
 Owls
 Frogmouths
 Nightjars
 Swifts/Humbd
 Colies
 Coraciae

   Hornbills
   Hoopoes
   Trogons
   Rollers
   Kingfishers
   Bee-eaters
   Jacamars/Puffbd

 
Pici
   Honeyguides
   Woodpeckers
   Barbets/Toucans

PASSERINES
   NZ WRENS
   OW SUBOSC

      Broadbills
      Pittas

 NW SUBOSC
   NW Flycatchers

   Becards
   Cotingas
   Manakins
   Antbirds
   Ovenbirds
   Woodcreepers
   Antthrushes
   Tapaculos 

 OSCINES
 Lyre-/Scrub-birds
 Bowerbirds
 Aust. Wrens
 Honeyeaters
 Scrubwrens
 Aust. Robins
 Kinglets
 Shrikes
 Vireos
 Whistlers
 Corvids
 Birds-of-Paradse
 OW Orioles
 Cuckoo-shrikes
 Fantails
 Drongos
 Monarchs
 Bush-shrikes
 Wattle-eyes
 Vangas
 Waxwings
 Dippers
 Thrushes
 OW Flycatchers
 Starlings
 Mimids
 Nuthatches
 N Creepers
 Wrens
 Gnatcatchers
 Tits/Parids
 Larks
 Swallows
 Leaf-Warblers
 Bulbuls
 Cisticolas
 White-eyes
 Babblers
 OW Warblers
 Flowerpeckers
 Sunbirds
 OW Sparrows
 Accentors
 Pipits
 Estridids
 Weavers
 Whydahs
 9-prim. Oscines

   Fringillines
   Carduelines
   Hawaiian Honycrp
   NW Sparrows
   NW Warblers
   Tanagers
   Cardinals
   NW Blackbirds

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Passeriformes, Oscines, Passerida, Sylviioidea - Tits
 
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Passerida, Sylviioidea
Families: Penduline-Tit, Titmice and Chickadees, Flycatcher Tits
 
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Chickadees of North America, Titmice of North America
 
Images:   
Carolina Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse
   
  Order Passeriformes - Perching Birds
   Suborder Passeres - "Oscines," Song Birds
Wiki     ToL     EoL
Wiki     ToL
  Passerines. Most passerines are smaller than members of non-passerine orders. They have a perching foot with three toes directed forward and the one (the hallux) backward with locking tendons to facilitate perching when their tendons are flexed. All passerines scratch by bringing the foot over the wing. Incubation ranges from 11 -21 days. Young are altricial - they hatch blind with little or no down - and nidicolous - spending 10-15 days or so in the nest.  Subsequent development is rapid and young approach adult mass at fledging. Parents provide care beyond fledging.
Oscines, Suborder Passeres, are our "song birds" with complex syringeal muscles used to produce varied and complex vocalizations.
Passerida. Radiation in Eurasia, Africa and North America (with later colonization of South America). Passerida have two humeral fossae (Corvida have one).
Sylviioidea - drab, monomorphic sleek passerines, centered in Indo-Pacific areas
   
  Titmice and Allies
Sibley and Monroe (1990) place the Penduline-Tits and Titmice (Tits) as Subfamilies (Remizinae, Parinae) in the Family Paridae. With addition of the Family Stenostiridae (flycatcher-tits), this might constitute an evolutionary line of basal Passerida - included in the Sylviioidea? These are fluffy, soft-plumaged song birds with 10 primaries.
 
  Family Remizidae – Penduline-Tit, Verdin
Wiki   EoL
  12 (13-10) species, 4 (5) genera. Europe, Asia, and Africa. Sibley and Monroe (1990) place the Verdin (Auriparus flaviceps) (Wiki) with the Polioptilidae but Clements (2007); Dickinson (2003), and Harris (2009) place this species with the penduline-tits. The Verdin is our only North American representative of this family - it is one of the smallest of the passerines in North America (weighing ~6.8g - chickadees weight ~10 g or more, Ruby-crowned Kinglets weigh about 6.5 g). The Verdin is a small gray bird with a yellow head and rufous shoulder. Verdins are insectivores and are found in the western deserts of North America, ranging south into Central America.
   Penduline-tits are small, agile, brown or yellow birds, with fine pointed bills. They are sexually dimorphic. They are gregarious, often vocal. They inhabit open country with trees and bushes, or reed-beds. They feed on insects and seeds.
   Several Old World species are cooperative breeders and parents are assisted by helpers. Males build elaborate, woven, globular nests with a side entrance. Fire-capped Tits, Cephalopyrus flammiceps, are hole nesters.
 
  Family Paridae - Titmice, Chickadees
Wiki     EoL
EXAMPLE
  53 (59-54) species, 3 genera (Parus, Sylviaparus, Melanochlora).  Northern hemisphere and sub-Saharan Africa. In the past, most tits were placed in the genus Parus Sibley and Monroe (1990). This genus has now been split into several genera with Parus restricted to the Parus major - P. fasciiventer (Great Tit) clade. Tits appear to form four major clades - the dark-capped chickadees (Poecile and Sittiparus), the long-crested Baeolophus and Lophophanes species, the white-cheeked Periparus (and Pardaliparus), and Parus sensu stricto. Titmice probably invaded North America twice - with Baeolophus arriving first and chickadees somewhat later (Early-Mid Pliocene).
   Tits are small, very active, social passerines with short, stout, conical, pointed, unnotched bills (the maxilla is kinetic – movable – to some extend). Their nostrils are small and covered with bristles. Their wings are rounded. Some have crests. The tail is relatively long. Their legs are relatively short and the outer toe is longer than the inner toe (which equals the hallux in size). They have 12 tail feathers. Their plumage is abundant and soft. Sexes are usually colored alike (monomorphic) and young are similar to adults in color and pattern.
   They eat seeds, insects, and other food depending on seasonal availability. They actively forage on limbs and twigs in forests and brush lands. They have specialized leg muscles facilitating their ability to hang upside down to feed. When food is abundant, they store it in caches. When food is scarce, they return to their cached reserves. They often form social groups that move together through trees and brush as they feed. They learn to retrieve a food item that is inaccessible by pulling on a string attached to it. Before homogenization when milk was still delivered to homes, bottles occasionally froze before being retrieved. Ice crystals pushed the cream upward, opening the foil caps. Tits quickly learned to feed on this source but didn’t wait for it to freeze – they learned to remove the caps themselves. Tits readily learn to eat at feeders. 
   All nest in holes (tree cavities, in rocks, or even on the ground). They are year-round residents where they occur. The nest is usually built by the female. They lay 5-10 (up to 15) eggs in a clutch - eggs are usually white spotted with reddish-brown. Females do most of the incubation which lasts 12-18 days. In some, incubatiion begins before the last egg is laid so young hatch asynchronously. The female may be fed by the male while she incubates. Both sexes feed the young. Chicks fledge in 16-25 days. Family groups may remain together for some time after fledging. Parids seldom live more than 10 years.
   In winter, parids often form small social groups and forage together and are welcome at our feeders. Our representatives include the Carolina Chickadee and Tufted Titmouse.
  Carolina Chickadee





  Carolina
  Chickadee
,
  Poecile
  carolinensis.

  Clemson
              SI Web

Tufted Titmouse

Tufted Titmouse, Baeolophus bicolor. Clemson
                                                              SI Web

Blue Tit

Blue Tit, Parus (Cyanistes) caeruleus.
National Garden. Athens, Greece.
Photo by Ed Konrad
                                       Wiki     EoL

 
 
Chickadees

   The following chickadees are found in North America:
      Carolina Chickadee, Poecile carolinensis. South-eastern states. Little overlap with other chickadees. Very similar in appearance to the Black-capped Chickadee.
      Black-capped Chickadee, Poecile atricapillas. Northern half of US and Canada from the East Coast to the West Coast and Alaska.
      Mountain Chickadee, Poecile gambeli. Western mountain and Great Basin states. Range extends south of that of the Black-capped Chickadee but there is broad overlap north of California and in Nevada and Colorado. Differs by having a black eye line separated from the cap by a white supercilium. The song is similar to that of the Black-capped Chickadee but has 3-6 syllables (and local dialects). The "dzee" note is lower and descending and can be recognized.
      Mexican Chickadee, Poecile sclateri. Central Mexico. Large black bib and gray flanks. Short, abrupt calls.
      Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Poecile rufescens. West coast from northern California to southern Alaska and inland in mountains of Idaho and Montana into Canada. Some overlap with Black-capped and Mountain Chickadees. Lacks a whistled song.
      Boreal Chickadee, Poecile hudsonica. Coast to coast, Canada. Overlapping northern range of Black-capped Chickadee. Brown cap with a wheezy call.
      Gray-headed Chickadee, Poecile cincta. Northern Alaska. North of the range of the Black-capped Chickadee. Cap is gray-brown and the flanks are cinnamon. Song is unknown.
   As you travel around the country, you might try to find some of these different tits.
 
 
Titmice

   The following titmice are found in North America:
   Bridled Titmouse, Baeolophus wollweberi. Resident, Pine-oak forest in the Sonoran Desert, south into Mexico. Small titmouse with bridled pattern on face. Unique.
   Oak Titmouse, Baeolophus inornatus. Resident. Oak-pine forest and chaparral from southwestern Oregon south through California and southern Baja. Plain gray titmouse with a short crest and a brown tinge.
   Juniper Titmouse, Baeolophus griseus. Resident, Pinyon-juniper woodland, Oregon through the Great Basin to western Texas. Also a plain gray bird with no brown tinge. Allopatric with Oak Titmouse.
   Tufted Titmouse, Baeolophus bicolor. Woodlands from the Great Lakes and New England south to the Gulf and eastern Mexico. ATitmouse with a black forehead, pale face, and orange flanks.
 
  Family Stenostiridae - Fairy Warblers, Flycatcher Tits
Wiki
  8 species, 3 genera (Stenostira (EoL), Elminia (EoL), Culicicapa (EoL). Africa, southeast Asia.
   A recently proposed family related to penduline tits and titmice.
 
  Banner - Carolina Chickadee. Clemson, SC.